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The current CFD auctions apply to projects that start in 2020 and run to 2023. That’s the first major change I’d like to point to – that we are now tendering for projects up to 5 years ahead of the day installation actually begins – instead of the two years or so that was typical back in, say, 2013 or 2014.
It’s commonly said that the only difference between men and boys is the size of their toys. So it may seem completely backwards to have a room of fully grown offshore wind people playing with tiny LEGO block models to help coordinate the installation of some of the biggest ‘toys’ in the world: offshore wind turbines.
As demands on offshore wind installation processes increase, crane technology is being pushed to its limits. Not only do offshore cranes need to lift heavier and larger wind turbine components, but they also need to operate in more gruelling weather conditions.
A number of years ago, it was normal practice for offshore contractors to win major offshore wind turbine installation projects using non-propelled jack-up barges supported by tugboats and anchors for positioning. This was the established way – it was safe, reliable and efficient.
Maximum wind speeds have a significant influence on costs and time required for offshore wind turbine installation projects. The maximum wind speed is the speed at which it is no longer possible to lift major turbine components (nacelle, tower and blades) by a jack-up vessel. The restricting factors are crew safety and equipment damage due to instability of the load during the hoist.
The essence is our speciality within certain niches and that we aim to be the best in those niches. Our dredging background has given us knowhow within different areas, such as the seabed, sea conditions and other marine environment factors as well as the associated technologies.
The lifting process on jack-up vessels is a key process in any offshore wind turbine installation or maintenance project. Control systems such as tagline systems are a necessary part of the lifting setup.
In an exclusive interview with High Wind Challenge, DEME Group CEO Alain Bernard, explains why innovation is needed for the offshore wind industry to advance and that true innovation will only happen with greater collaboration across the industry.